Home Automation Server Specification

From hours spent researching myself, I thought it would be nice to see a server spec which has be tried and tested.  I needed some benchmark of power required to run what i wanted.  This one is a few years old now but hasn't struggled once.



19" rack mount case

GigaByte Ultra Durable 3 EP45-UD3R Motherboard

Intel Quad Core Q8200 @ 2.33GHz

Zaliman Ultra Quiet CPU cooler CNPS 8000

4 x Ultra quiet case fans

2GB DDR 2 Ram

ATI Radeon HD 3600 graphics card

2 x 500GB seagate Barracuda Hard drives RAID 1 Mirrored

2 x 500GB seagate Barracuda Hard drives RAID 1 Mirrored

Tagen 500w Power Supply

Unknown cheap 4 channel video and audio capture card 88X(beware, driver nightmare!)

Hauppage WinTV and capture card

Operating system

Windows XP Pro service Pack 3

Software installed for home automation use

Cinemar MLserver V3.0.557

Homeseer Standard Edition

ICatcher Console v3.3

AirMouse v1.1.0.3

Codec Pack



AntiVirus and Firewall

Avast AntiVirus free edition

Commodo Firewall free edition

UPS - Power Backup

APC Powerchute Personal Edition


I hate noisy computers especially if they are on 24/7.  This PC is fairly quiet but not quiet enough to be my desktop when the fans rev up.  When i first attached it to the rack i was terrified as the noise levels doubled.  I fixed this using sound deadening material stuck to the rack and case so metel wasn't touching metal.  This helped alot and i spent hours trying to reduce the noise until i realised it was my to Sky boxes making the humming noise!  My problem was that my rack was attached to my floor and top of the stairs.  This amplified any small vibrations.


The main reason for running everything on one machine is power consumption.  It would be nice to seperate the cctv from everything else but that means another power supply plugged in.

I try to keep the windows XP install as clean as possible.  Only the stuff i need starts up and I don't go installing anything I'm not sure of.

I have the server set to auto login to make reboots easy.  If you don't do this you'll end up having to login when you reboot.

RDP Tip: create a batch file with the following line:

tscon.exe 0 /dest:console

Store this batch file on your servers desktop and disconnect your RDP session by double clicking it.  This will restore the local users session meaning you don't have to log back in when watching through your TV.



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